First Quarter 2019 Update

Extra, extra. Read all about it.

Hello, Bonanzlers! It's nice to see you. After Punxsutawney Phil predicted an early spring, we hit the ground running in 2019. As many of you might remember, we release a survey to our sellers at the end of each year. This feedback helps us identify and solve problems that Bonanza sellers face every day. We use this information to create a roadmap and plan our projects for the upcoming year. 

Marketing to past customers
One request from sellers was for more ways to market to past customers. This quarter, we're focusing on three key areas:

  • We are working on adding some seasonal marketing opportunities by identifying top-selling categories during key times of year and using that data to drive buyers to the site.
  • The Customer Marketing Tool is getting a facelift this quarter. We're updating the dashboard and providing more information about how our pre-made templates work.
  • We're investing time in social media, expecting that more social media interaction will bring more repeat visitors to Bonanza. Sellers can now submit listings for consideration for an Instagram feature. We're also running a social media contest, where customers share posts of themselves wearing shirts bought on Bonanza using #BonanzaTees for a chance to win a Bonanza gift card.

Seasonal surge projections
As mentioned above, our team is developing more precise methods for predicting the seasonality of our top-selling categories. We’ll share this information with sellers throughout the year so you can strike while the iron is hot. The Customer Marketing Tool will also have seasonal templates coming soon. Be on the lookout for emails and site banners about which categories are currently thriving.

Managing your listings
Most survey respondents said that creating and maintaining listings takes up the bulk of their time. Last year, we took a few small steps to help reduce this time spent, like refining our tooltip information on the item listing form. We also simplified the shipping section of this form, and are working on modernizing the code on the backend to make it easier to maintain and update in the future. Additionally, we have plans to make the batch editor faster and easier to use.

Better synchronization
Most sellers asked for improved reliability of inventory synchronization with other marketplaces. While synchronizing with other marketplaces can be challenging, we want to find ways to make improvements where we can. Key areas include exploring ways to reduce duplicate listing imports and decrease image importing time. These changes will make cross-platform inventory syncing a more seamless experience.

Site search improvements
We've received feedback from sellers that our site search has been inconsistent. Sometimes items don't seem to show up for related keywords (or irrelevant items show up instead) and filters don't always work as planned. We have plans to fix these bugs and make site search more dependable. We also spent time last year improving site search on mobile devices. We redesigned search to be more usable on mobile devices and adjusted the navigation menu on mobile devices to allow for more direct browsing. Refining a search works the same on all platforms now, giving buyers many more options to sort and filter.

banner with images of methods to make announcements

INTRODUCING THE BONANZA ORDER RESOLUTION CENTER

Buyers are an important part of our marketplace, so we also ask for their feedback to help guide our initiatives. One of the most common requests we receive is for an easier way to manage order issues. That's why we created the Bonanza Order Resolution Center.

This new feature allows buyers to file disputes directly through Bonanza when their order was significantly not as described (SNAD) or when the item was not received (INR). This will not change how sellers respond to and manage PayPal cases. Additionally, sellers still have access to the same seller protection benefits provided by PayPal.

Why did you create the Bonanza Order Resolution Center?
Roughly 20% of negative feedback received by our support team is related to the confusing nature of the dispute process. We believe that this feature will build trust in the marketplace, increase repeat customers, and drive future sales.

Making it easier to file disputes? How will this help sellers?
We understand your concern. By creating a seamless order resolution experience, we're facilitating buyer confidence and trust. Bonanza will continue to encourage buyers to contact sellers directly to resolve their issue before filing a dispute. If a buyer does file a dispute, PayPal's regular standards of evaluation still apply. A valid reason is still needed to win the case, and the decision for a case is still made by PayPal.

Does this mean that Bonanza’s support team will now be able to influence PayPal decisions on cases?
No. PayPal remains the final arbitrator in evaluating a case. Our support team will now have better insight into the details of these PayPal cases. We'll be able to help monitor cases and assist with communication between parties. With a more complete picture from both sides, our support team may even be able to help prevent dispute escalations.

Does this affect the way buyers handle issues with payments made through Stripe or Amazon Pay?
No. Buyers who paid through Stripe or Amazon Pay will continue to file cases directly with those companies. This Resolution Center will processes PayPal disputes only. Our team hopes to expand to other payment processors in the future. If you’d like more information about this new tool, visit the Bonanza Order Resolution Center help page.

newspaper illustration

CUSTOMIZING WEBSTORE INVENTORY

You've probably heard about Bonanza Webstores before. Just in case you haven't: a Webstore uses your booth inventory to create a standalone website. Webstores are separate from the Bonanza marketplace, giving you your own branded ecommerce site. 

Sellers have long asked for a way to select which booth items are available in their Webstore. Some sellers have items that only need promotion during certain seasons. Others want a way to differentiate their Webstore brand from their booth. Giving sellers more control over selling is one of our top goals. Now, sellers with active Webstores can now customize their Webstore inventory!

customize webstore items

The default setting for Webstores is to publish all active booth items. To edit your Webstore item inventory, go to the "Basic Settings" of your Webstore and select the "Manage Items" tab. From there, you can use the controls on the righthand side of the table to toggle items on or off. This functionality adds a layer of customization that will make Webstores a more universal tool for all sellers.

calendar pages

SECOND QUARTER DATES TO REMEMBER

April

  • 15th: Taxes are due (U.S.)
  • 21st: Easter Sunday
  • 19th - 27th: Passover
  • 22nd: Earth Day (U.S.)

May

  • 4th: Star Wars Day
  • 5th: Ramadan begins
  • 12th: Mother's Day (U.S.)
  • 27th: Memorial Day (U.S.)

June

  • 4th: Ramadan ends
  • 16th: Father's Day (U.S.)
  • 20th: Bonanza's 11th Anniversary

"Trust the magic of new beginnings." - Meister Eckhart

We can't wait to see what this new quarter brings! Thank you for being a part of the Bonanza community. Because this is a new blog series, we'd love to hear what you think about it. If you have constructive feedback or ideas on how to improve these quarterly posts, please share in this 3-question survey.


32 responses to First Quarter 2019 Update

  • NecktieGuy says:
    03/18/19 at 12:36:27

    How about offering Stripe for all…what could go wrong?

    BonanzaGrace says in response:
    03/18/19 at 12:57:09

    Hi NecktieGuy,

    Thanks for your response! We want Stripe to be a simple payment solution for our sellers, free of application or additional processing fees. In order to help make that happen, we’ve absorbed the costs associated with offering Stripe. This is why Stripe is a membership-only feature. We hope to expand to more sellers in the future.

    Thanks,
    BonanzaGrace

  • JoycesVarietyShop says:
    03/18/19 at 13:58:00

    Increasing social media interaction is a great idea.

  • Lowtechelec says:
    03/18/19 at 14:05:34

    Ramadan? What does this have to do with business?

    BonanzaGrace says in response:
    03/18/19 at 15:59:03

    Hi Lowtechelec,

    Thanks for your question! Nearly 2 billion people observe Ramadan worldwide. Ramadan is the month of giving, so sellers may see an increase in gift purchases during this time (just as candy and bunny-themed items might see a spike around Easter). Additionally, fasting during daylight hours is part of Ramadan, so certain categories like Kitchen & Dining might see a fluctuation in sales.

    Thanks,
    BonanzaGrace

  • watfordleather says:
    03/18/19 at 14:56:02

    Hi everyone, it is really a great pleasure to be Bonanzlers. It is a great platform which attracts buyer and encourage sellers to use their expertise to make our customers happy. We love our customers and believe in them. Good luck everyone.

  • ooak says:
    03/18/19 at 15:20:31

    THANK YOU FOR CONTINUING TO MAKE BONANZA BETTER & – LISTENING – TO YOUR CUSTOMERS !

  • Expert_Advice says:
    03/18/19 at 15:33:42

    Way to go. Thank you bonanza team for every advancement you go for a better selling community.

  • wisjul61 says:
    03/18/19 at 15:53:02

    Very well done! You are all doing a great job and I look forward to the next quarterly blog.

  • MarieADawson says:
    03/18/19 at 15:54:12

    Great job everyone!!!

  • SynergyMountingSys says:
    03/18/19 at 16:04:14

    Better sync with eComDash is needed. It’s nowhere near ready for primetime.

  • BookbinEtc says:
    03/18/19 at 16:09:44

    Thanks for the update, Grace. I had noticed that there weren’t any new blog posts recently.

  • shoppingbuyfaith says:
    03/18/19 at 16:21:20

    Thank you! Everything sounds positive to me! :)

  • PackIt_n_BackIt says:
    03/18/19 at 18:54:59

    Thank you Bonanza for continually updating and improving the platform in order to help the buyers with ease of navigating, in turn helping to make their shopping experience better.

  • A_Sterling says:
    03/18/19 at 19:49:43

    like

  • ROUSHAN_MISHRA says:
    03/19/19 at 01:01:13

    GUD

  • onemanstreasure16 says:
    03/19/19 at 03:31:37

    We hope this site really takes off in 2019! Many of us are tired of the high selling fees on Amazon and eBay.

  • old_or_new says:
    03/19/19 at 04:03:38

    Thank you for the Bonanza Bulletin. I am thankful for all the information you provide to help sellers.

  • opticstogo says:
    03/19/19 at 05:10:25

    Thank you for all that you do!

  • Asecretadmirer says:
    03/19/19 at 05:14:18

    Great, Good Initiative by Bonanza.

  • AZMilitaria says:
    03/19/19 at 05:54:08

    How about a quarterly update from Bonanza listing suggested improvements from customers and sellers so that the community can vote on how to prioritize the suggested improvements for the next quarter.

    BonanzaGrace says in response:
    03/19/19 at 09:13:45

    Hi AZMilitaria,

    Thanks for the suggestion! I’ll pass that along to our product team and see if we can incorporate even more seller feedback on a quarterly basis.

    Thanks,
    BonanzaGrace

  • NecktieGuy says:
    03/19/19 at 08:40:02

    Thank You for your quick response. This is the best explanation of the Stripe situation I have ever heard from Bonanza…and I read the ask the community boards religiously. Sadly when I had a paid membership, I never found an advantage in viewership or, especially, sales. I always felt that if Bonanza did well, I would do well. And felt stripe or any other additional pay choice would add an extra edge. By the way…the new photo editor is neat.

    BonanzaGrace says in response:
    03/19/19 at 09:26:04

    Hi NecktieGuy,

    I understand your concern. Our team has been working hard over the past few years to add even more value and new features to our memberships. We’ve created a membership checklist that identifies all the ways in which you can get value out of your membership plan to make sure you’re maximizing your spend. We also have a new landing page with an overview of the membership features our sellers love most – you can check that out here:
    https://www.bonanza.com/memberships/features

    We also have a free seller checklist that includes tips on how to make the most out of your Bonanza booth without paying for a membership.
    https://www.bonanza.com/booths/redirect_in_booth?to=seller_checklist

    Finally, in terms of payment providers, I’m happy to tell you that we’re working on integrating with Amazon Pay. This payment option will be available to all sellers regardless of membership, and should be available soon. Be on the lookout for an announcement when it goes live!

    Thanks for choosing Bonanza,
    BonanzaGrace

  • safir_20 says:
    03/19/19 at 08:52:20

    Thank you

  • tuzm_kem7mah_ says:
    03/19/19 at 15:21:46

    I have not sold much yet however, I know it will pick up soon. Thanks for the updates!!

  • EmpressDepot says:
    03/19/19 at 16:58:30

    Thank u so much for starting this type of blog up. It is something that I have been hoping for a long time. This gives me a renewed sense of confidence in Bonanza.

    I like that u all have started up the Bonanza order resolution center as I, too, feel it will build buyers’ sense of trust in the site.

    I really like the seasonal surge projections. This kind of insight/guidance is what I have been hoping for. It’s something that I cannot completely do on my own.

    Thank God for taking a really hard look at Bonanza search!!!

    BIG thumbs up! Thanks for talking to us in detail :)

  • EmpressDepot says:
    03/19/19 at 17:10:33

    Question Bonanza Grace, I saw further above where u we’re talking about the memberships. I am wondering if u all have ever thought about allowing sellers to pay individually for certain perks rather than paying for a whole membership. I’m not saying to not offer memberships the way you have them now. But for myself, I would be willing to pay specifically to have my newest listings first, or say, the boxes below my chat box be there. (sorry, I cannot think of the exact name of these).

    In each membership there is something I do not need. Thanks.

    BonanzaGrace says in response:
    03/20/19 at 10:31:14

    Hi EmpressDepot,

    Thanks for the kind words! I recall that you’ve shared this idea before, and it is an intriguing one, to be sure. We are always looking for ways to get sellers the tools that are most helpful to them. I’ll be sure to pass this idea along to our Product Team.

    Thanks for your thoughtful ideas and for being a loyal blog reader and Bonanza seller :)

    BonanzaGrace

  • PaoloM32 says:
    03/20/19 at 08:52:56

    Shouldnt we focus on marketing to any and all customers? Bothering old ones doesnt make sense to me. Ever been on a modern ecommerce site like POSHMARK for example? It looks a lot like Bonanza does now square boxes but the difference is they use Salesforce and customers can “like” the item then it allows you to send them an offer(!) unlike here. I would say 25% of the time customer will buy when you do that. They also get to counter offer(!) unlike here.

    BonanzaGrace says in response:
    03/20/19 at 10:29:13

    Hi PaoloM32,

    Thanks for your question! Marketing to new customers is very important. After all, returning customers were new customers at one time. We encourage new customer marketing through tools like the Advertising Broadcaster, social media sharing, and a variety of other methods.

    The Customer Marketing Tool was built specifically to allow sellers to build a loyal customer base by marketing to past customers. According to RJ Metrics, “The likelihood of a customer making a second purchase is about 30%, but if they make a second purchase, the likelihood of a third purchase jumps past 50% (and grows exponentially from there). This means that targeting your customers immediately after their first purchase might be the most effective way of increasing the value of any given customer.” You can read more about that here:
    https://blog.rjmetrics.com/2015/06/30/whats-value-ecommerce-customer/

    In regards to allowing offers, Bonanza does have offer functionality. You can turn this setting on in the Payments & Purchases tab of your booth settings. Here’s more info on how to do that:
    https://www.bonanza.com/site_help/booth_setup_basic/best_offer

    Thanks for choosing Bonanza!
    BonanzaGrace

  • EmpressDepot says:
    03/21/19 at 17:06:54

    Bonanza Grace, I very well may have shared this idea before :) I guess u could say I am eager about it then….and hopeful. Thanks for your kind words as well.


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